Can anyone take a stab at this?
The stem looks really similar to Forsythia.
I do not have access to the shrub itself. It's a friend asking if I know what it is.
They said shrub is about 6 foot tall. And they have never seen flowers or berries.
SOLVED: deciduous ID
leaves look sort of glossy, unlike forsythia. looks a little like some privet that grows in the shade. it doesn't have much flower or berry, so could go unnoticed.
It is definitely not forsythia (your plant shown has entire leaf margins). I agree with sallyg that it favors privet (Ligustrum spp.), of which there are probably several species commonly found around your neck of the woods.
Are there privets that don't have flowers and berries though? I'm only familiar with the ones that I see around here (not sure which species, I think maybe texanum?) and they all have flowers and berries.
Privet. That's a real possibility.
I didn't think it was Forsythia because of the leaf. I only meant to say that the twigs looked a lot 'like' forsythia.
They have it planted in a shade spot, and by the sounds of things, I think it may be a bit too shady for whatever this is.
The leaf is very glossy and soft.
I'll check the plant files for privet...
thank you those who tried so far.
My neighbors have some privets bordering my yard, which are now in a lot of shade. They flower very sparsely, and you could easily miss it. I've never noticed berries on them. Glossy and soft sounds right for privet leaves. I'm thinking of the common hedge plant which I thought was asian originally.